Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations

Disaster planning: Risk assessment vital to development of mitigation plans

Date:
May 23, 2014
Source:
Inderscience Publishers
Summary:
Wildfires and flooding affect many more people in the USA than earthquakes and landslide and yet the dread, the perceived risk, of the latter two is much greater than for those hazards that are more frequent and cause greater loss of life. Research suggests that a new paradigm for risk assessment is needed.

Wildfires and flooding affect many more people in the USA than earthquakes and landslide and yet the dread, the perceived risk, of the latter two is much greater than for those hazards that are more frequent and cause greater loss of life. Research published in the International Journal of Risk Assessment and Management, suggests that a new paradigm for risk assessment is needed so that mitigation plans in the face of natural disasters can be framed appropriately by policy makers and those in the emergency services.

Maura Knutson (nee Hurley) and Ross Corotis of the University of Colorado, Boulder, explain that earlier efforts for incorporating a sociological perspective and human risk perception into hazard-mitigation plans, commonly used equivalent dollar losses from natural hazard events as the statistic by which to make decisions. Unfortunately, this fails to take into consideration how people view natural hazards, the team reports. Moreover, this can lead to a lack of public support and compliance with emergency plans when disaster strikes and lead to worse outcomes in all senses.

The researchers have therefore developed a framework that combines the usual factors for risk assessment, injuries, deaths and economic and collateral loss with the human perception of the risks associated with natural disasters. The framework includes risk perception by graphing natural hazards against "dread" and "familiarity." These two variables are well known to social psychologists as explaining the greatest variability in an individual's perception of risk, whether considering earthquakes, landslides, wildfires, storms, tornadoes, hurricanes, flooding, avalanche, even volcanic activity. "Understanding how the public perceives the risk for various natural hazards can assist decision makers in developing and communicating policy decisions," the team says.

The higher the perceived risk of a natural disaster, the more people want to see that risk reduced and that means seeing their tax dollars spent on mitigation and preparation. For example, far more money is spent on reducing earthquake risk than on reducing the risk from wildfires, perhaps because the perceived risk is much greater, even though both will cause significant losses of life and property. The team's new framework for risk assessment will act as an aid in decision making for these types of situations as well as perhaps even offering a way to give members of the public a clearer understanding of actual risk rather than perceived risk.


Story Source:

The above story is based on materials provided by Inderscience Publishers. Note: Materials may be edited for content and length.


Journal Reference:

  1. Hurley, M.A. and Corotis, R.B. Perception of risk of natural hazards: a hazard mitigation plan framework. International Journal of Risk Assessment and Management, May 2014

Cite This Page:

Inderscience Publishers. "Disaster planning: Risk assessment vital to development of mitigation plans." ScienceDaily. ScienceDaily, 23 May 2014. <www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2014/05/140523094255.htm>.
Inderscience Publishers. (2014, May 23). Disaster planning: Risk assessment vital to development of mitigation plans. ScienceDaily. Retrieved August 29, 2014 from www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2014/05/140523094255.htm
Inderscience Publishers. "Disaster planning: Risk assessment vital to development of mitigation plans." ScienceDaily. www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2014/05/140523094255.htm (accessed August 29, 2014).

Share This




More Earth & Climate News

Friday, August 29, 2014

Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations


Featured Videos

from AP, Reuters, AFP, and other news services

Killer Amoeba Found in Louisiana Water System

Killer Amoeba Found in Louisiana Water System

AP (Aug. 28, 2014) State health officials say testing has confirmed the presence of a killer amoeba in a water system serving three St. John the Baptist Parish towns. (Aug. 28) Video provided by AP
Powered by NewsLook.com
Scientists Have Figured Out Why Rocks Move In Death Valley

Scientists Have Figured Out Why Rocks Move In Death Valley

Newsy (Aug. 28, 2014) The mystery of the moving rocks in Death Valley, California, has finally been solved. Scientists are pointing to a combo of water, ice and wind. Video provided by Newsy
Powered by NewsLook.com
Big Waves, Minor Flooding from Hurricane

Big Waves, Minor Flooding from Hurricane

AP (Aug. 27, 2014) Thundering surf spawned by Hurricane Marie pounded the Southern California coast Wednesday, causing minor flooding in a low-lying beach town. High surf warnings were posted for Los Angeles County south through Orange County. (Aug. 27) Video provided by AP
Powered by NewsLook.com
Calif. Quake Underscores Need for Early Warning

Calif. Quake Underscores Need for Early Warning

AP (Aug. 26, 2014) Researchers at UC Berkeley are testing a prototype of an earthquake early warning system that California is pursuing years after places like Mexico and Japan already have them up and running. (August 26) Video provided by AP
Powered by NewsLook.com

Search ScienceDaily

Number of stories in archives: 140,361

Find with keyword(s):
Enter a keyword or phrase to search ScienceDaily for related topics and research stories.

Save/Print:
Share:

Breaking News:
from the past week

In Other News

... from NewsDaily.com

Science News

Health News

Environment News

Technology News



Save/Print:
Share:

Free Subscriptions


Get the latest science news with ScienceDaily's free email newsletters, updated daily and weekly. Or view hourly updated newsfeeds in your RSS reader:

Get Social & Mobile


Keep up to date with the latest news from ScienceDaily via social networks and mobile apps:

Have Feedback?


Tell us what you think of ScienceDaily -- we welcome both positive and negative comments. Have any problems using the site? Questions?
Mobile: iPhone Android Web
Follow: Facebook Twitter Google+
Subscribe: RSS Feeds Email Newsletters
Latest Headlines Health & Medicine Mind & Brain Space & Time Matter & Energy Computers & Math Plants & Animals Earth & Climate Fossils & Ruins